Yes, Bears (for now) quarterback Jay Cutler has plenty of leverage when it comes to a possible trade. And he seems to be ready to use it. Or at least to threaten to.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Network explained on (shocker) NFL Network that Cutler is “still considering” whether he wants to play, not play, walk away, etc.
For Cutler, the retirement option is a useful tool to scare away a team that may be inclined to trade for him, but that he may not be inclined to play for. It’s also a way to save face, in the event no one trades for him, the Bears cut him, and no one offers him the starting job without having to compete with a rookie and/or slappy.
That’s the difference between Cutler and guys like Carson Palmer and Ben Roethlisberger. For them, the play/no play option has a viable location if the decision is to play. For Cutler, retirement may be the only way to avoid washing out of the bottom of the league by spending a year getting banged around on a bad team — or to escape the indignity of a quarterback-needy league collectively deciding it no longer wants him.